Why AMD Could be Mercedes F1's Most Important Partner This Season

Why AMD Could be Mercedes F1's Most Important Partner This Season

Formula 1 is all about speed, as the adage goes. In what is promising to be an eye-opening year of transformation and excitement, having an advantage over your competitors has never been more critical, as a set of rules and guidelines has thrown the grid into disarray.

Mercedes F1, which has won seven of the previous eight constructors' world championships and is home to seven-time drivers' champ Lewis Hamilton, has suffered mightily this season, trailing Ferrari and Red Bull by a wide margin.

EPYC Velocities

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Picture: Mercedes AMG-Petronas

However, the team is aware that it can still rely on one of the world's best computer corporations to help it reach new heights, as seen by the team's expanded cooperation with AMD.

The semiconductor business contributed its second-generation EPYC engines to aid the team's aero testing, a critical component of designing a race-winning vehicle.

"We are honored to work with the reigning Formula One Constructors' Championships,  Mercedes-AMG Petronas F One Team, who are at the forefront of racing and technology," said Dan McNamara - AMD's SVP and General Manager of the Server Business Unit.

For Formula One teams, delivering the most efficient aerodynamics computational analysis may distinguish between victory and defeat in a race. The Mercedes-AMG F1 squad can iterate on car design more quickly and effectively using AMD EPYC processors than they could with their old system.

AMD reported in a blog post that Mercedes F1 was able to gain a 20% performance boost for CFD (computational fluid dynamics) workloads used to simulate and evaluate the laminar flow of their F1 vehicle by using AMD's EPYC processors.

With gigabytes of data generated by wind tunnel tests and modeling runs, aerodynamics has never been more valuable to a Formula 1 team, even more so now that the sport's governing body, the FIA, has imposed strict limits on the amount of testing that can proceed to balance the playing field between wealthy and impoverished teams.

That includes a $140 million budget limit on computational resources expenditure, which covers the expenditure spent on servers. These costs might step down to only $135 million in 2023. About 1,800 new geometric simulations are permitted throughout the eight-week testing process, so extracting every bit of data is critical.

Mercedes is now aiming for an upswing in fortunes on the racetrack as Hamilton and his teammate George Russell attempt to improve performance after signing a three-year agreement to utilize the second-generation EPYC gear.

Mercedes' Ride-height Improvements May Result in "Quite A Bit of Lap Time."

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Picture: Autosport

The German automaker has had a poor beginning to the 2022 seasons, with the W13 impairing performance. The team has discovered that to prevent their vehicle from bouncing, they must lift it so high that it loses a significant amount of downforce and hence lap time.

Mercedes manager Toto Wolff apologized over team radio to Lewis Hamilton after the Grand Prix Emilia Romagna for an "undrivable" vehicle, as the former champion finished 13th.

Although the team admits there is no quick solution to its difficulties, Wolff believes the upgrades being prepared for the next circuits in Barcelona and Miami will be essential in enabling the team to run its vehicle in a more favorable configuration.

"We are certain that the technology we are using will enable us to operate the automobile at a lower speed," he added. "It is the area where we feel we get all the aero glory -  but have been unable to unlock it - due to the car's bottoming out."

While Mercedes is aware that there are several aspects where the W13 must be upgraded before it can compete with Red Bull and Ferrari as forerunners, Wolff is certain that significant progress will be palpable once the hassle has been eliminated. 

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Paul Syverson
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Paul Syverson
Paul Syverson is the founder of Product Reviews. Paul is a computer scientist; he used to carry out a handful of significant studies which contributed to bringing in many special features on the site. He has a huge passion for computers and other tech products. He is always diligent in delivering quality writings to bring the most value to people. Syverson.org |

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